Peter Cobb, cofounder and senior vice president of eBags, knows a thing or two about e-commerce.
The e-tailer has sold more than 14 million bags since its inception more than 13 years ago, and eBags.com carries 585 brands and 48,000 styles. It’s been profitable for a decade, but perhaps the most telling statistic for Cobb is that the site has seen 2.4 million product reviews from its outspoken consumer base.
“It was social commerce before social commerce,” Cobb said of the engaged shopping community, highlighting a specific backpack that garnered 1,811 reviews — both good and bad. When a user gives a product a “thumbs down,” this automatically alerts a customer service representative, who contacts the consumer (and the brand if a certain item gets several of the same negative complaints or comments).
However, in terms of actually selling product on social channels, eBags is still figuring out how to monetize in the space. The e-tailer has nearly 120,000 fans on the platform, but it still only accounts for less than one percent of overall sales.
For Cobb, there are several trends in online retail — the aforementioned user-generated content element, as well as large imagery, curation and personalization, scarcity leading to conversion and the innovations of tech giants. He believes that mobile shopping is “where it’s at,” and that many are underestimating the power of transaction on this channel.
He calls Google, Facebook, Amazon and Apple the “four tech titans,” citing that 47 percent of global Web users visit Google every day, 43 percent visit Facebook, one third of Internet shoppers begin research on Amazon and 21 percent of iPhone users and 49 percent of iPad users shop on their devices.
According to Cobb, it’s features such as Amazon’s same-day delivery that will force other e-tailers to innovate in the same category. Having this shipping option is a “unique advantage” and he expects Macy’s, Wal-Mart, Target and Staples to follow suit.
Video is another area that Cobb wants to expand on the site. Currently, there are 800 videos, but Cobb plans to ramp this number up to the thousands in the near future.
Taking the final spot on the mens’ portion of New York Fashion Week calendar next month will be none other than @tomford. Though he’s shown his men’s wear in New York in the past, this will mark the first time the designer has shown his men’s collection alone during New York Fashion Week: Men’s. His runway show will debut on February 6 at the Park Avenue Armory. #wwdfashion
London-based couture house @ralphandrusso has certainly been in the spotlight, having its dresses worn by @beyonce, Angelina Jolie, Meghan Markle in her engagement photos and more. For couture, Tamara Ralph focused on ornamentation — think: feathers with chain mail, jet embroidery and clusters of pearls and crystals. See the rest of the collection on WWD.com #wwdfashion #couture (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo)
Minnie Mouse celebrated her 90th birthday by getting her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. For her celebratory luncheon, @coach’s creative director @stuartvevers dressed her in a custom made prairie dress, complete with Vever’s take on the polka dot – black sequined versions – under a cropped motorcycle jacket. The designer also put his own mark on Minnie’s classic red shoes, infusing the color with sparkles and adding some Coach crystals. “We chose colors that were very Minnie and also represented quintessential Coach elements,” said Vevers. #wwdfashion #nationalpolkadotday (📷: George Chinsee)
@nickjonas is unveiling his first-ever apparel collection through a partnership with John Varvatos. The limited-edition capsule, which makes its debut in spring, also marks the first time the designer has collaborated with anyone on a line. “The process in working with Nick is amazing. It’s inspiring to be around someone who is not only connected with the trade that they do, but also with what’s happening in the environment around him, and how that connects to what we do with style,” said Varvatos. (RG: @johnvarvatos) #wwdfashion
@margotrobbie steps out onto the red carpet wearing @miumiu. The actress is nominated for “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role” in “I, Tonya” at the #SagAwards. (📷: Stewart Cook) #wwdfashion
For @massimogiorgetti of @msgm, the Nineties are his favorite decade. “They had a huge impact on my personal growth. What I like of the Nineties is that they are not so precise in terms of style as other decades…there was actually a bit of everything,” he said. As seen on MSGM’s Spring 2018 show: tie-dye and a bit of grunge, two styles that are synonymous with the decade #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @kukukuba)